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24229
Online Program

Adventures Online: The Miracle of California’s Animal Migrations

Each year, elephant seals, birds, whales and butterflies converge on California’s Central Coast. Fascinating lectures and virtual field trips introduce you to these hardy voyagers.
New
Program No. 24229RJ
Length
3 days
Starts at
349
Online Program

Adventures Online: The Miracle of California’s Animal Migrations

Each year, elephant seals, birds, whales and butterflies converge on California’s Central Coast. Fascinating lectures and virtual field trips introduce you to these hardy voyagers.
Length
3 days
Starts at
349
Program No. 24229 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
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DATES & PRICES

Online Program
Details
Accommodation Details
Learn from the comfort of your own home.

DATES & PRICES

Online Program
Details
Accommodation Details
Learn from the comfort of your own home.

At a Glance

With most of the world’s human beings grounded and staying close to home these days, now is the perfect time to discover the miraculous animal migrations that are still taking place along California’s stunning Central Coast. Three to four weeks each year, migrating elephant seals, birds, whales and butterflies converge during their annual pilgrimage. Join expert naturalist and environmental leader Chris Cameron and other experts for three breathtaking days of virtual field trips and engaging lectures that introduce you to these extraordinary voyagers—all from the comfort of your home.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Become entranced by the gargles, grunts, squeals and trumpeting of the elephant seals as you observe them with our mammals expert.
  • Learn why birds migrate, where they’re going, and how they manage these incredible flights.
  • View hundreds of monarchs at the “Butterfly Trees” and learn the dos and don’ts of growing monarchs.

General Notes

You’ll enjoy 2-3 hours of daily instruction, discussion and/or field trips, which includes sufficient breaks throughout the program. Please review the daily itinerary for start and end times to ensure you won’t miss a minute of this live experience. This online program is through Zoom, an easy-to-use web video service that includes closed captioning. All you need is an Internet connection and your computer. We’ll provide a how-to guide to make sure you’ll have a hassle-free experience. This session is offered live only and will not be available on demand.
Featured Expert
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Chris Cameron
Chris Cameron is the Executive Director of Camp Ocean Pines in Cambria, California. A naturalist at heart, he leads workshops for the Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (AEOE). As a consultant, he helped establish the California Regional Environmental Education Community (CREEC) Network. This statewide communication network provides teachers with resources to increase the environmental literacy of California students. Chris has a passion for mentoring students and staff, and is dedicated to developing a love for inquiry and nature.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Chris Cameron
Chris Cameron View biography
Chris Cameron is the Executive Director of Camp Ocean Pines in Cambria, California. A naturalist at heart, he leads workshops for the Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (AEOE). As a consultant, he helped establish the California Regional Environmental Education Community (CREEC) Network. This statewide communication network provides teachers with resources to increase the environmental literacy of California students. Chris has a passion for mentoring students and staff, and is dedicated to developing a love for inquiry and nature.
Profile Image of Shannon Harmon
Shannon Harmon View biography
Over the course of Shannon Harmon’s distinguished career, she worked as a guide, interpreter, and supervisor in California State Parks for 40 years as well as a Ranger Interpreter with the Bureau of Land Management and a California high school teacher. She’s been a Lewis and Clark enthusiast since high school, and her hobbies include singing, drawing, painting, photography, sewing and traveling.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Elephant Seals
by Carole & Phil Adams
Field Guide to the Gray Whale
by Oceanic Society
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3 days
DAY
1
Orientation, Migrations Intro, Elephant Seals, Grey Whales
From the comfort of your own home.

Activity note: Today’s session will begin at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time and end at 2:40 p.m.

Morning: 11:00 a.m. Welcome, Orientation, Introductions. Our Group Leader will greet everyone and review the program theme, the up-to-date daily schedule and any changes, Zoom meeting protocols, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. We will then say hello to our fellow Road Scholars. We’ll also have an overview of the four migrations we will be studying: marine mammals including elephant seals and grey whales, birds, and monarchs with maps and details. 11:40 a.m. Virtual field trip. We’ll begin with elephant seals as local experts lead our exploration. We’ll see phoca flats, a lighthouse, harbor seals and sea lions, a whale watching area, and the area where elephant seals landed in 1990. We expect to see close ups of bulls, females, and pups (babies). We’ll observe behaviors and sounds of bulls fighting and females with their pups. We will have a Q&A session after the virtual field trip. Our Group Leader will then interview docents with the Friends of the Elephant Seal Visitor Center that house a variety of educational exhibits.

Afternoon: 1:00 p.m. Break. 1:20 p.m. Lecture. In an illustrated presentation, we’ll learn about Grey Whales and hear from naturalists and a whale watching captain. We’ll also view whale watching footage from the central California coast and Baja Bay. 2:20 p.m. Q&A. Wrap-up and notes for tomorrow. 2:40 p.m. Today’s session will end.

DAY
2
Bird Migration, Banding, Telemetry, Science, Photography
From the comfort of your own home.

Activity note: Today’s session will begin at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time and end at 2:45 p.m.

Morning: 11:00 a.m. Review of the day. 11:05 a.m. Lecture. We’ll learn about the amazing realities and latest research on bird migration. What do we really know? Why do birds migrate? Where do they go? How do they manage these incredible flights? We’ll then focus on the world-wide migrations of peregrine falcons and other migrating raptors. We will have a Q&A session after the lecture.

Afternoon: 12:05 p.m. Break. 12:25 p.m. Lecture. During an illustrated presentation, we’ll learn how scientists net and band migrating birds, how the details are recorded, and what happens after the banding. 12:45 p.m. Lecture. Telemetry is the recording and transmission of data from remote sources for monitoring and analysis. Scientists use telemetry to study animals in the wild and keep track of their populations and movements. We’ll view a demonstration of how GPS is attached to a bird, as well as how this information is used and long term data evaluated. We’ll also learn about condor tracking. We will have a Q&A session after the lecture. 1:25 p.m. Break. 1:35 p.m. Lecture. We’ll hear from a naturalist about “citizen science” and how to use binoculars, spotting scopes, and different birding apps. We’ll also hear about projects such as eBirding. 2:05 p.m. Lecture. We’ll have another illustrated presentation on bird photography, how to “capture” birds on film, and how ecotourism helps birding populations. 2:25 p.m. Q&A. Wrap-up and notes for tomorrow. 2:45 p.m. Today’s session will end.

DAY
3
The Monarch Story, Monarch Locations, Growing Monarchs
From the comfort of your own home.

Activity note: Today’s session will begin at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time and end at 3:00 p.m.

Morning: 11:00 a.m. Review of the day. 11:05 a.m. Lecture. We’ll learn the story of monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus). Every spring, they leave their overwintering sites in Mexico and slowly make their way north to the United States and Canada. Along the way, they search for milkweed on which to lay their eggs. We will have a Q&A session after the lecture.

Afternoon: 12:25 p.m. Break. 12:45 p.m. Virtual field trip. This illustrated presentation will include “visits” to monarch sites such as Morro Bay State Park, Monarch Grove in Los Osos, San Luis Obispo, and Pismo. We’ll also have interviews with local naturalists. 1:15 p.m. Lecture. Have you considered “growing” your own monarchs? We’ll hear from experts about the do’s and don’t’s of growing monarchs as well as host plants, parasites, and stages of growth. 2:15 p.m. Q&A session. Wrap-up and farewells. 3:00 p.m. This concludes our program.






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